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Coordinating, Developing, and Delivering Highway Transportation Innovations

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Publication Number:      Date:  Winter 1995
Issue No: Vol. 59 No. 2
Date: Winter 1995


New Research

The following new research studies reported by the Federal Highway Administration's (FHWA) Office of Research and Development are sponsored in whole or in part with federal highway funds. For further details on a particular study, please contact Bob Bryant, editor of Public Roads, (202) 493-3468.

NCP Category A -- Highway Safety

A.5: Highway Safety Design Practices and Criteria

Title: Highway Safety Design Model -- Data Collection and Analysis

Objective: To develop a prototype interactive highway design model for evaluating the safety impacts of alternative designs. The model will be based on the results of previous FHWA and National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP) studies or best current practice in areas with missing data.

Contractor: Pragmatics Inc.

Expected Completion Date: May 1996

Estimated Cost: Estimated Cost: $406,638

Title: A Criterion of Testing the Goodness of Fit of a Model

Objective: To conduct computer simulation of different functional forms and to compare the R-square test method and the Akaike Information Criterion (AIC) to determine the goodness of fit. The literature indicates that R-square as a test of the goodness of fit of a model is sometimes misleading. A low R-square value does not mean a poor fit. AIC is gaining in popularity in academic circles.

Interagency Agreement: Department of Energy (Oak Ridge National Laboratory)

Expected Completion Date: January 1995

Estimated Cost: $50,000

NCP Category B -- Traffic Operations/Intelligent Vehicle-Highway Systems

B.1: Advanced Traffic Management Systems

Title: Dynamic Traffic Assignment (DTA) and Synthetic Origin and Destination (O-D) Matrices

Objective: To develop a deployable DTA model designed under the 1990 study "Traffic Modelling Needs for ATIS." Since dynamic O-D data is required for input to the model, this study will develop algorithms to create synthetic O-D data. To account for different intelligent transportation system deployment strategies systems, three variations to the original model design will be developed. These deployment strategies include items such as the type and coverage of traffic monitoring and incident detection systems, the type and capability of traffic signal control systems, and the extent of surface street and freeway control integration. This study will also conduct sensitivity analyses regarding the coupling of DTA with traffic simulation models of different resolution to assess the impact of the routing and/or diversion strategies.

Interagency Agreement: Department of Energy (Oak Ridge National Laboratory)

Expected Completion Date: December 1996

Estimated Cost: $5,250,000

Title: Additional Real-Time Traffic-Adaptive Signal Control Prototype Development (U of Arizona)

Objective: To develop a real-time, traffic-adaptive signal control system for intelligent vehicle-highway systems (IVHS) that includes system development, laboratory testing, and field evaluation.

Contractor: University of Arizona

Expected Completion Date: July 1995

Estimated Cost: $395,618

B.2: Advanced Traveler Information Systems

Title: Development of an In-Vehicle Signing Specification

Objective: To obtain technical support related to in-vehicle signing. Investigations into the technologies and issues associated with in-vehicle signing (IVS) systems will be conducted. Benefit analysis of IVS shall be conducted within the first three months of this task to guide decisions for future efforts. In addition, functional requirements will be defined, and system/concept analysis will be performed. If the benefits warrant continuation, the contractor will assist FHWA to acquire a consortium to further develop and test an operational IVS system and to make the system available for deployment.

Interagency Agreement: Department of Energy (Oak Ridge National Laboratory)

Expected Completion Date: Unspecified

Estimated Cost: $500,000

Title: Communications Alternatives for IVHS

Objective: To conduct investigations into communication technologies and issues associated with IVHS. Activities will focus on identifying and analyzing particular communication technologies for IVHS functions. This includes communication protocol issues. Preferred communication alternatives will be recommended for specific IVHS functions.

Contractor: Arinc Research Corp.

Expected Completion Date: July 1996

Estimated Cost: $3,500,000

B.8: Crosscutting Issues

Title: Evaluation Support for Operational Tests

Objective: To provide the necessary staffing and expertise to assist in the development of evaluation plans and provide technical assistance to monitor evaluations of IVHS operational tests nationwide. As a minor activity, this effort will develop an evaluation framework and a set of standard, IVHS evaluation procedures and criteria. This will form a common basis for comparing similar projects, interpreting testing/demonstration project results, and building on work conducted by MITRE, the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and the Volpe Transportation Systems Center.

Contractor: Booz-Allen and Hamilton

Expected Completion Date: June 1996

stimated Cost: $8,632,491

NCP Category C - Pavements

C.2: Evaluation of Flexible Pavements

Title: Health-Related Aspects of Crumb Rubber-Modified Asphalt Pavements

Objective: To determine, in accordance with the 1994 Appropriations Act, the effects on workers' health from adding crumb rubber modifier to asphalt pavements.

Interagency Agreement: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health

Expected Completion Date: June 1995

Estimated Cost: $507,440

NCP Category D - Structures

D.2: Bridge Management

Title: Condition Assessment and Capacity Evaluation of Historic Steel Bridge

Objective: To optimize present global nondestructive evaluation systems and develop new techniques for comprehensive bridge inspection to include remote sensing and recording capabilities.

Interagency Agreement: National Science Foundation

Expected Completion Date: May 1997

Estimated Cost: $1,600,000

NCP Category E - Materials and Operations

E.3: Geotechnology

Title: International Knowledge Data Base for Ground Improvement Technology

Objective: To develop a data base to be used for a rational selection, design, and construction of ground improvement technology. The data base managers will obtain case histories, documented failure records, research test data, existing design codes, and existing design guidelines.

Contractor: International Technology Transfer Center for Ground Improvement

Expected Completion Date: July 1998

Estimated Cost: $100,000

Title: Buried Land-Mine-Detection Acoustic/Seismic Technology for the Measurement of Soil Compaction for Civilian Construction

Objective: To develop instrumentation for rapid, direct measurement of soil compaction parameters. Present methods for testing soil compaction are slow and labor-intensive, and the accuracy of these methods is uncertain. Improved in-process compaction quality assurance will significantly reduce the cost of constructing and maintaining the national infrastructure. The proposed instrumentation concepts are based on a synergy of acoustic/seismic military technology, including the recent development by Bolt, Beranek and Newman (BBN) Systems and Technologies of acoustic/seismic techniques to locate buried land mines for the Army.

Contractor: BBN Systems and Technologies

Expected Completion Date: August 1996

Estimated Cost: $739,000

Title: Seismic Analysis of Soil-Nailed Retaining Structures

Objective: To verify and refine a new design and analytical method for predicting seismic response of soil-nailed walls.

Interagency Agreement: National Science Foundation

Expected Completion Date: June 1995

Estimated Cost: $100,000

Title: Seismic Foundation Capacity

Objective: To expand the guidance for foundation design provided in the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) Specification for Seismic Design of Bridges. Materials in the current specification are based on pre-1970 technology. The expanded guidance will incorporate recent advances in foundation analysis and design as well as guidance for liquefaction analysis and design for uplift.

Interagency Agreement: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

Expected Completion Date: June 1995

Estimated Cost: $100,000

E.5: Highway Maintenance Title: Concrete Bridge Protection and Rehabilitation Development and Testing

Objective: This study involves the chloride removal from bridge decks, rehabilitation of corrosion-damaged, reinforced concrete bridge elements, cathodic protection of bridge decks, and patching bridge decks with corrosion-inhibiting concrete. The 27 experimental field sites have been constructed. This is a continuation of ongoing Strategic Highway Research Program (SHRP) studies on the existing or soon-to-be constructed SHRP experimental sites. Continued monitoring to include data collection, periodic evaluations, and a final analysis and report are needed.

Contractor: CONCORR Inc.

Expected Completion Date: July 1999

Estimated Cost: $1,113,643

Title: Highway Concrete Technology -- Development and Testing

Objective: This is the continuation of four ongoing SHRP studies on existing SHRP experimental sites. Continued monitoring to include data collection, periodic evaluations, and a final analysis and report are needed. The four studies are: C-202-Alkali-Silica Reactivity, C-203-Freeze-Thaw Resistance, C-205-High-Performance Concretes, and C-206-Optimization of Highway Concrete Technology.

Contractor: ERES Consultants

Expected Completion Date: June 1999

Estimated Cost: $989,574

NCP Category H - Other

H.5: Other

Title: Technical Support and Program Coordination of Energy Technologies

Objective: To assess present energy-related technologies available from the Department of Energy and to plan and conduct an effort to provide technical support and program coordination within the highway community to adapt these technologies for transportation use.

Interagency Agreement: Department of Energy

Expected Completion Date: June 1995

Estimated Cost: $99,000

Title: Improving Developmental Characteristics of Reinforcing Bars

Objective: To conduct research on reinforcing bar geometry to include development of new deformation patterns that optimize bar development characteristics and to extend research into tests using 105 MPa, high-strength concrete. This project is co-sponsored by FHWA and the National Science Foundation; the estimated cost shown below is the FHWA share.

Contractor: University of Kansas

Expected Completion Date: July 1997

Estimated Cost: $107,500

Title: Discretionary Grants to Support Advanced Highway Research

Objective: The following eight grants are part of the FHWA's Office of Advanced Research discretionary grants program. The program objective is to foster innovative research in emerging/advanced/adaptive technologies that have long-range applications for highway use within specific topic areas. Each grant is for 12 months.

Grantees: Futron Corp. (Application of a Quantitative Decision-Support Methodology for Planning Research and Development)

Univ. of Hawaii (Scanning Acoustic Microscopy of Interfaces in Cement Composites)

Georgia Tech Research Corp. (Plasma Vitrification of Geo-Materials)

Faraday Technology (Advanced Coatings for Rebar)

Colorado State Univ. (A Novel Microwave Method for Filled and Covered Crack Detection in Steel Bridge Members Including Crack Tip Identification)

North Carolina State Univ. (CAD Integrated Real-Time Control for Robotic Excavation and Pipe-Laying Development and Field Testing)

Atlantic Coast Technologies (A Voice-Input/Voice-Output Expert System to Assist Highway Safety Inspectors)

BBN Systems and Technologies (Society of Signals: An Artificial Life Approach to Adaptive Traffic Signal Control)

Expected Completion Date: August 1995

Estimated Cost: Approximately $75,000 each

NCP Category M - Advanced Research

M.9: Sensor Technology

Title: Fiber-Optic/Other Deflection Sensor Technology

Objective: To develop fiber-optic and other deflection sensors and associated electronics for structural research, pavement research, and potential weigh-in-motion applications and to develop a data base library to use as input data for advanced sensor processing algorithms.

Interagency Agreement: Department of the Navy

Expected Completion Date: June 1997

Estimated Cost: $850,000




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